Method for Synthesizing Knowledge about Public Policies

Morestin, F., Gauvin, F. P., Hogue, M. C., & Benoit, F. (2010). Method for synthesizing knowledge about public policies. Retrieved from National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy website:

Canadian Example available En français


This resource offers a way to bring together different forms of evidence to inform policy decisions. Developed by the National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy (NCCHPP), the tool provides public health professionals with a systematic approach to synthesizing different types of information during the promotion, adoption and implementation of public policies.

Steps for Using Method/Tool

The method guides users through five steps:

  1. Compile an inventory of applicable policies.
  2. Explicitly state the intervention logic (sequence of expected effects).
  3. Collect the data.
  4. Contextualize the data.
  5. Synthesize the data.

These summaries are written by the NCCMT to condense and to provide an overview of the resources listed in the Registry of Methods and Tools and to give suggestions for their use in a public health context. For more information on individual methods and tools included in the review, please consult the authors/developers of the original resources.

We have provided the resources and links as a convenience and for informational purposes only; they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by McMaster University of any of the products, services or opinions of the external organizations, nor have the external organizations endorsed their resources and links as provided by McMaster University. McMaster University bears no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of the external sites.

Have you used this resource? Share your story!